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Stories written by carpinteyrotpo

Economy threatens parks

   When Linda Thornhill isn’t studying economics in Collier Park in Ramona, she is in the park playing with her grandchildren.
   “It’s a beautiful place,” Thornhill said of the eight-acre county park between Sixth and Seventh streets. 
   It’s safe and it has good equipment, she explained.
   But Collier Park is among county parks struggling to stay open in
the down economy, county representatives said during a meeting in
Ramona Community Center last Thursday evening.

North County musician awes high school students

   All afternoon a saxophone wailed and inspired students when renowned
jazz musician Richard Elliot played for and spoke to the Ramona High
School jazz band.
   Elliot talked with the students about his personal experiences
becoming a professional musician and his time playing with the
influential jazz band “Tower of Power,” and he offered advice to the
budding musicians in the high school band room recently.
   “The whole idea is to listen to a lot of different people,” said Elliot. 
   Take what you learn and make it your own, he said.  “It’s very important to have your own sound.”
   Elliot, a North County resident who grew up in Los Angeles, began
playing the saxophone while still in high school. He told the students
that it was his high school music teacher who influenced him to take up
the instrument.
   Daniel James, Ramona High School’s music teacher, hoped that the
students would be just as inspired by Elliot’s perspective. 

Family recovering from Easter quake

   Ramona resident David Williams and his family couldn’t have known that anything else would’ve gone wrong. 
   In April, their week-long vacation of wakeboarding and fun in the
sun just a few miles south of Mexicali, Mexico, began rather
ominously. 
   “It was real windy when we arrived Wednesday night,” said Williams. 
“Thursday morning it rained, Friday night one of the kids left the
water on in the trailer and it flooded the trailer.”
   The next night, while they were out, one of the dogs got into the
fishing gear.  “And when we came home,” said Williams, “he had a hook
through his nose.” 
   “I started thinking, ‘after Friday and Saturday night, maybe we should have left at that point,’” Williams said wryly.
   And then there was the earthquake. 

Underage drinking is topic of meeting

 Law enforcement officials and prevention specialists spoke to a sparse
audience of parents and teens in a town hall meeting in the performing
arts wing of Ramona High School Thursday evening, April 15.
   The meeting is part of a continuing effort to keep teens safe and to
raise awareness about the growing problem of underage drinking.
   Billed as a “community conversation,” the meeting was the beginning
of a series of sessions following the “Every 15 minutes” program, which
was held at the high school March 31 and April 1.  The program was
designed to bring to life the stark realities and life-changing effects
of underage drinking.

Civil War comes alive behind middle school

 The field behind Olive Peirce Middle School became an authentic
Confederate Army encampment for its eighth-graders when Company E, 3rd
Regiment of Confederate Engineers depicted the lives and roles of
soldiers for the school’s fifth annual Civil War Living History Day.
   The event, put on by the school’s U.S. history team on Friday, served as a prelude to the students’ study of the Civil War. 
   “We like to call it ‘Velcro learning,’” said Nancy Sumerel,
eighth-grade history teacher who spearheaded the event, explaining that
it sticks to the brain.  “They really come away with a lot.”

Ramblers travel club celebrates 30 years

   The Ramona Ramblers Senior Travel Club met for its monthly meeting
and to celebrate its 30th anniversary at the Ramona Senior Center.   
   The club was honored with a certificate of recognition sent from
District 77 California Assemblyman Joel Anderson. Photo albums from
members’ collections were on display in the pool room, including
newspaper clippings documenting the club’s travels over the decades. 
Members also shared stories and birthday cake during the March 1
celebration 
   Traveling down memory lane, Don Owen, 89, one of the club’s original
members, was on hand to recall a few of his experiences, stating that
he went along for the “trips and the adventure.”

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